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Daily Snippet #22: Page 134 / 100 Words

A Lady of Distinction. Regency Etiquette: The Mirror of Graces (1811). Enlarged edition with Additional Period Illustrations. Mendocino: R. L. Shep, 1997. [Reprint edition of The Mirror of the Graces; or The English Lady’s Costume. London: B. Crosby, 1811.]



     “The open-wove clock* and instep, instead of displaying fine proportion, confuse the contour; and may produce an impression of gaiety; but exclude that of beauty, whose rays always strike singly. But if the clock be a coloured or a gold one, as I have sometimes seen, how glaring is the exhibition! how course the association of ideas it produces in the fancy! Instead of a woman of refined manners and polished habits, your imagination reverts to the gross and repelling females of Portsmouth-point, or Plymouth-dock; or at least to the hired opera-dancer, whose business it is to make her foot….”


[Clock = a woven or embroidered ornament on the side of a sock or stocking, going up from the ankle].

Visit the All Things Georgian blog for all the info you could ever need on clocked stockings: https://georgianera.wordpress.com/2015/03/31/18th-century-stockings-how-shocking/

And where you will find this print from the Lewis Walpole Library where you can see the embroidered stockings: “Les Merveilleuses,” by Carle Vernet


To read the full text of the original 1811 edition, click here at the University of Wisconsin’s DIGITAL LIBRARY FOR THE DECORATIVE ARTS AND MATERIAL CULTURE (fabulous place!): http://digicoll.library.wisc.edu/cgi-bin/DLDecArts/DLDecArts-idx?id=DLDecArts.MirrorGraces

If you are in need of your own clocked stockings (but please, no GOLD), you can find them online at the Regency Marketplace:

or a colorful collection at Etsy:

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